I found this article interesting….it is less of an article and more of an opinion piece, but I had some additional thoughts to share. The original article titled “Swingers: Mentally Healthier Than Monogamous Peers” can be found here.

One of the traits that determines happiness and mental health is flexibility: the capacity for creativity, abstract thinking, and adapting to changing circumstances. When it comes to the sex lives of swingers, there’s no question that they are more flexible in their approach to sex than their monogamous peers.

Ok so that’s not news, let’s face it, we all know that swingers are definitely more flexible. Even still, it is my experience that swingers tend to judge others on sexual moral standards. What one person finds “disgusting” may just be a part of normal sexual practice to another. Is it that more swingers have lower standards or is it that more swingers lean towards the “if it makes you happy” attitude? Furthermore, morality itself is quite flexible. Does anyone really have the right to pass judgements on the morality of others?

I personally have a “if it makes you happy” attitude when it comes to most things. This came into play when I was recently asked for my thoughts on men that specifically date transsexuals. Although I have thought about this question to lengths, I was surprised by the question at that moment. My final answer was “it doesn’t matter to me.” I don’t judge people by whom they date or what they are into sexually. If dating a transsexual is what you like – then by all means pursue it. Everyone has their own opinions and preferences, and if you’re happy with your own choices, why disparage someone else for theirs?

When it comes to being in the lifestyle, many couples have different limits. If you are a couple and your limit is soft swapping and your limit is that you don’t want to have intercourse (penetration) with another couple, then that is your preference. As long as all of the parties involved (both couples) agree on what is happening and no one is doing something against their will, then who am I to intervene and say that it is wrong?

Swinging couples are often deeply in love and emotionally connected, but they don’t value sex in the same way their monogamous peers do.

The above quote from the article I’ve definitely found to be the norm in couples that swing together. Swinging is viewed as a fun thing to do TOGETHER. The couples are “emotionally monogamous” and don’t feel the need to cheat on their partner. Swinging is an activity to be enjoyed. Sex is taken less seriously by swingers than it is by more traditional couples. This is probably why those in the lifestyle often refer to sex as “play.”

Swingers in committed relationships usually have their own definitions of “cheating.” My personal definition of cheating is if one part of the couple has sex with someone and the other partner is unaware of what is happening. If I’m in the room and my significant other has sex with someone else I am perfectly ok with that. I am become part of the experience – not just someone who’s waiting for their spouse to come home.

Whether you are in the lifestyle or not, sexual limits and preferences can vary in many ways. What I find fascinating (and sometimes disturbing), is that other people often feel the need to “weigh in” on other people’s choices. When it comes down to it, if those choices don’t effect you, it really isn’t any of your business.

Article in “Psychology Today”
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